Identifying Young At-Risk Children
Before They Experience Reading Failure
Modified from Overcoming Dyslexia, by Sally Shaywitz, M.D.
The five-year-old who can't quite learn his letters becomes the six-year-old who can't match sounds to letters and the fourteen-year-old who dreads reading out loud and the twenty-one-year-old who reads excruciatingly slowly. The threads persist throughout a person's life. But, with early intervention, this scenario doesn’t need to happen.
Today, it is possible to reliably identify boys and girls at high risk for dyslexia before they fall behind. Good help is available to them now as never before. Here is what we believe is the most scientifically sound and sensible approach to identifying young at-risk children before they experience reading failure:
All of these steps here can help you judge if your child is ready to read or if he requires special attention or education to help him begin to read. If his testing indicates that he is not quite ready to read, you have the choice of delaying kindergarten or allowing him to enter kindergarten and receive intensive, evidence-based prevention programs. Our recommendation is not to delay kindergarten; waiting another year will only delay needed help.